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Retired Teacher Plunged 1,000ft To Death While Climbing In The Alps

Climbers have been left stunned after Des Rubens died when a loose rock caused him to plunge on a 14,022ft high mountain in the Swiss Alps on the weekend.

The retired teacher and experienced mountaineer fell 1,000ft to his death when he was climbing the 14,022ft Finsteraarhorn – the highest mountain in the Bernese range.

The 64-year-old was reportedly crossing a ridge when a loose rock caused him to plunge into a glacial crevasse.
Scotland’s climbing community have been shocked by his death. John Fowler, secretary of the Scottish Mountaineering Club, said: “Des was a hugely experienced, competent and safe climber. He was a member of the club for 30-plus years and a previous president for two years.

“You have to be highly regarded to get into that position. He’d climbed all over Scotland, the Americas and the Himalaya. We’re absolutely stunned by his loss – I’ve never received so many comments and tributes” he said. “Outdoor activities have been his life. He is probably the person we would have least expected to have had an accident of this nature.”

David Gibson, of the Mountaineering Council of Scotland, stated: “We’d always been happy to contribute to Des’s expeditions. It’s a sad loss.”

Des was a highly respected teacher who had recently retired. He spent much of his career at Edinburgh’s Craigroyston High. Former pupils and parents left tributes on his Facebook to a “committed and enthusiastic” teacher.